Yum, Yum and More Yum
Review by Tom
I only recently have started to like gourmand scents. I loathed the vanilla fad of the 90's, and most fizzyfruity scents make me gag. Here are a few that changed my mind.
Serge Lutens Rahat Loukoum
Rahat Loukoum is a fragrance that on the surface, I should really hate. Named after the candy called Turkish Delight, (and it is a delight, trust me) it's very fruity, and I normally loathe that. It opens with a hit of bright, boozy cherries that remind me of (oh god, here he comes with the stories again...) my first job after college. I worked at Dean and Deluca in New York, and one of the things we sold were incredibly boozy fruits in, well, booze. Raspberries in framboise and cherries in cherry marnier. The opening of Rahat Loukoum smells exactly what it smelled like taking the cork out of the wide mouth of that big 8 quart jar. Rich cherries, almond and spikey booze. While I do get the smoky part that Colombina mentions (as well, as a delightfully sly musk that creeps in like a thief: Skank, hands off my candy!) on me this stage lasts throughout. It fades slightly behind the smoky almond and the honeyed musk, but as most SL's comes back with any movement that would make one "glow". I love it so much though, that I might just try to jump start it.
Parfumerie Generale Aomassai
Reading the notes on this one (caramel, toasted hazelnuts, spices, vetiver, balsam wood, bitter orange, incense, licorice, wenge, dried grasses and resin), one would think that this would make perhaps the most horrific thing one could be served as dessert, never mind as a scent. As a matter of fact, the opening of hazelnut and caramel leans just this side of cloying. Actually, it's so sweet and nutty that you kinda want to figure out a way to spread it on toast. Luckily, just at the point that you start actually gnawing on your wrist, the vetiver, woods and spices drop in to deepen and tart up the proceedings, with a wonderful bitter orange note adding more foodie depth. Many thanks to Colombina for my introduction to this one. It's truly brilliant.
Argenteé by Des Filles a la Vanille
Reading the ingredients on this one, you would have thought that I would have headed for the hills. Well, I would have if I'd just read about them. Luckily I was in ScentBar (the store for LuckyScent here in Los Angeles) and the nice lady just grabbed my arm and said "I think you'll like this". Yes, the opening is very much like a treat that I loved when I was a kid and the treat-truck would come trundling by on a hot summer day and us kids would run to the curb with the money we'd hurriedly begged from Mom; creamsicle: orange and vanilla scented cream. But then, the creamsicle starts its walk on the wild side. The peel of the orange starts to come out, and the pith. The vanilla starts to get boozy, and then we start getting musk. Not a lot, this isn't MKK, but enough to let us know this creamsicle's gone bad. It's sitting on a barstool, knocking back the screwdrivers, spoiling for a fight. There are quite a few more scents ahead of it on the list so I am not going for a full bottle, but this is a great find.
Well, since we've covered yum, yum and more yum, I guess we should touch on a yuck.
Luctor et Emergo by People of the Labyrinths
Okay, I'll admit it. I am a hard-headed New Englander, and I usually have to find out for myself whether I will like something or not. In some cases it works out, like movies the critics hated that I find wonderful, in some cases it does not. Like the time I was visiting my friend in Scottsdale in February and I ignored the advice of the seniors around the unheated pool that the water was too cold to swim. Imagine jumping into an 80000 gallon Slurpee, and the subsequent near heart attack.
Well, Ignoring the warnings, and hoping to find a local alternative to the wholly wonderful Rahat Loukoum, I got a sample of LeM from eBay. Upon applying, I did get some almond and some cherry, but it almost immediately became... Play-Doh. In the interest of science, I kept this goop on for hours, just to see if it went anywhere.
Luckyscent.com carries both Argenteé (at $75 for a bottle or $3 for a tester, and I'd test it- I loved it, but remember, I love Miel de Bois..) and Luctor at $165. Since Play-Doh is ten bucks, you can get two bottles of something nice from luckyscent and still get the LeM effect if you really need it.
Aomassai is available at Parfumerie Generale website, and Rahat Loukoum is available here if you are lucky enough to have a friend who lives in the EU and is willing to ship to you, or you live in the EU.